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The Criminal Justice (Evidence, Etc.) (Northern Ireland) Order 1988


This is the original version (as it was originally made).

Issue of letters of request

9.—(1) Where on an application made in accordance with the following provisions of this Article it appears to a resident magistrate or judge that criminal proceedings—

(a)have been instituted; or

(b)are likely to be instituted if evidence is obtained for the purpose,

he may order that a letter of request shall be issued to a court or tribunal or appropriate authority specified in the order and exercising jurisdiction in a place outside the United Kingdom, requesting it to assist in obtaining for the purposes of the proceedings evidence specified in the letter.

(2) In paragraph (1) “appropriate authority” means any central authority designated by a state to receive requests for assistance in legal matters.

(3) An application for an order under this Article may be made by a prosecuting authority.

(4) If proceedings have already been instituted, a person charged with an offence in the proceedings may make such an application.

(5) Without prejudice to the generality of any statutory provision conferring power to make them—

(a)Crown Court rules;

(b)rules of court;

(c)county court rules; and

(d)magistrates' courts rules,

may make such provision as appears to the authority making any of them to be necessary or expedient for the purposes of this Article and in particular for the appointment of a person before whom evidence may be taken in pursuance of a letter of request.

(6) In exercising the discretion conferred by Article 5 in relation to a statement contained in evidence taken in pursuance of a letter of request, the court shall have regard—

(a)to whether it was possible to challenge the statement by questioning the person who made it; and

(b)to whether the local law allowed the parties to the criminal proceedings to be legally represented when the evidence was being taken.

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